1. Dallas Mavericks at Phoenix Suns, December 25
Although the Mavericks and Suns are not in the same division, they may have the fiercest rivalry in the Western Conference.
It all began in 2018. The first overall pick of the 2018 draft, Deandre Ayton, squared off against the third overall pick, Luka Doncic. The game was a part of the Kia NBA Tip-Off series and was televised on ESPN just as this game will be.
On that fateful day in 2018, Dallas fell short to Phoenix, losing by 21 points in Doncic and Ayton's debuts. Fast forward to the 2022 playoffs, and the Mavs-Suns rivalry was set ablaze.
The Mavs beat the number one overall seed Phoenix Suns by 33 points in Game 7 to earn the right to play the Warriors in the Western Conference Finals.
Here, the Devin Booker vs. Luka Doncic rivalry truly began. Dallas came from behind in the series to upset the Suns behind stellar play from former Maverick Jalen Brunson and Doncic.
Doncic and Booker went at each other all series, as both stars demonstrated their status as top guards in the West for years to come.
This matchup on Christmas Day will be a fantastic one. By late December, the NBA season begins to heat up. As the NFL season prepares for the playoffs, many fans turn their sole attention to the NBA.
Televisions across the United States will tune into the meeting between Dallas and Phoenix, Luka and Booker, and Irving and Durant at primetime, 8:30 p.m. CT.